Mondays don’t get any better than this last one.
“Gather round; gather round!” he shouted as he stood on the chair.
Instantly, the fervor and enthusiasm in the room multiplied. He shared a few words and thanked the group. Later, we spoke briefly, and he signed my copy of Who’s Got Your Back.
You know what I really enjoyed about the whole night? It was one of those events where you could just walk up to anyone and start talking. The approachability factor was through the roof.
Next to San Francisco, Houston has had THE largest turnout on the book tour. Keith began by asking fun, interactive questions to set the tone and loosen the crowd.
I sat next to the VP of an energy management company. Our first conversation started with me telling him about a personal flaw that was holding me back.
“There are people with resources that want to help you, but they can’t if you’re drowning in the deep end of the pool and not telling anyone,” Keith said.
Four magic words of the day: Generosity, Vulnerability, Candor and Accountability.
“There’s not a single person in this room that does not do something to inhibit their success.”
The tethered elephant. You know those huge elephants you see held down by small shackles on their feet and stake in the ground? If they simply moved a few inches, they could easily escape. But when they’re small elephants, those same shackles are too strong for them. As they grow, they never stop and realize they’re a hundred times stronger than those measly chains.
“Every one of you in this room is a tethered elephant. What are you doing that’s holding you back? Every one of us has glass ceilings we put on ourselves that we need to bust through.”
Two of my lifelines in my personal life happened to be sitting next to me. We each took two minutes to share our goals. It’s great to stop and listen to a person as they vocalize their passion. And it’s nice when someone stops and listens to yours with a genuine concern to help you get there.
Reconnecting. Throughout the event, I reconnected with Houston Greenlight members from our monthly lunches. Plus, I loved meeting those I hadn’t had a chance to meet face to face. My online relationships were growing offline. We were able to build familiarity and a sense of solidarity.
The After Party
Next, at least 30 of us headed over to Maggie Rita’s Tex Mex. Instant camaraderie bred. I happily eavesdropped on conversations. They were deep and fascinating! I met Ryan Geist, who’s traveling with Keith throughout the tour. Loved to hear that he appreciates the Houston heat. Other cool folks: Ted, Chase, Jared, Carl, Eric, Elizabeth, Tania-Rene, Avi, Kevin, Liz, Kristen, Wayne, Leroy, J.C., Sheila, John, Patrick and more! Kevin gave valuable insight to Sajan about the restaurant biz. Others talked about how to introduce yourself when you’re between jobs. Or how to hustle and bring in income as a budding entrepreneur.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of you who made the evening unforgettable.
The After After Party
By 10:30 p.m. it had been a long day. Many said their goodbyes, with new relationships forged. A few of us trekked back over to the Marriott for dessert with Keith, who had been having a small, private dinner.
This man knows how to set the mood for a party. A guitarist crooned classic tunes as guests chattered away. Soft pink lights clothed the walls. A long, thin table with crisp, white tablecloth, empty plates and tealights displayed evidence of lovely, stimulating conversations and full stomachs.
This seriously felt like a dream sequence.
We chatted around. Then, as Eric Clapton’s “Wonderful Tonight” was strummed and melodized, Sajan and I strolled out arm in arm through the double doors into the night.
Were you there at any of these events? What did you take away? What brought you there?
Have you read Who’s Got Your Back or Never Eat Alone?